Demand for credit in Himachal low: Goel

uco_cmd-goel.jpgShimla: With Himachal Pradesh having one of the best loan recovery records, the banking industry was looking for more investment opportunities but there was a low demand for credit, here, SK Goel chairman cum managing director UCO Bank stated here.

He said that it was not fair to accuse banks of treating Himachal as a deposit state and make investments in other states, for UCO bank was willing to extend finance to various sectors but hardly anybody came forward to off take credit, he said.

Goel who was here in connection with a meet of the banks Board of Directors said that an Rs 160 crore loan facility for Himachal’s agriculture sector was cleared by directors, today.

About new products, he said that in 23 branches across the country the bank proposed to introduce special senior citizens counter where other than banking needs the senior citizens could have small get together over a cup of coffee provided by the bank. Core banking solutions would help to extend online banking from 300 to 600 branches by the end of this financial year, he said.

With Himachal being 100 % financial inclusive state, talks for making it a technological inclusive state with Reserve Bank of India and the state government were in a advanced stage, said Goel.

Against a profit of 316 crore in 2006-07, this year the bank had set a target of accruing a profit of Rs 450 crore and intended to bring down NPA from 2.4% to less than 1 percent. The bank was pitching for financial restructuring which central government in principal had approved. Once financial restructuring is completed the bank intended to go for a follow on issue, he said.

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